Possible associations between HLA-DR4 and laboratory, radiographic, joint count, functional, and demographic measures of clinical status were analyzed in 154 white patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Overall, 65 percent of the patients were HLA-DR4 positive, similar to other series. HLA-DR4 was associated significantly with the presence of rheumatoid factor and more severe radiographic changes. HLA-DR4 was not associated with significant differences in demographic, joint count, or functional measures of clinical status. HLA-DR1 was not associated significantly with differences in the presence of rheumatoid factor, radiographic changes, or other measures of clinical status. Selective associations of HLA-DR4 with rheumatoid factor and radiographic scores were more marked in men than in women. Patients who were putatively homozygous for HLA-DR4 were all seropositive and had more severe radiographic changes than patients who were heterozygous for HLA-DR4.
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